Change is an inevitable part of life, for without change, we can’t grow and develop. It is so strange that something which everyone knows is a part of life- change- is so resisted. Even more ironic, at the heart of our Catholic faith is the transformation of bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ. Change!!! Transformation equals change.
In the reading from Acts, the church responds to the growing reality that many widows and people in need were not being served properly. They gathered as a community and together decided to create a new ministry that would take care of the needs of those most vulnerable. This “change” developed into the Order and Ministry of the Deacon.
Every family, every parish, is a community that needs to change with new growth and new movements of population. People come and go within parishes, a necessary sign of growth. But this can also be threatening to those who have been a part of the community for years.
We priests, ministers and parishioners need to embrace new people by letting go of established ways of doing things. That’s how parishes grow and study vibrant. The same people shouldn’t be doing the same things in the parish year after year. All of us who have committed our lives to the parish need to pass on the torch, by recognizing new talent and new leadership.
My hope and dream is to see our parish continue to grow and develop by welcoming new people, letting go of how things are currently done, and accept the fact that there is always new life after us. We can either block change, becoming bitter and closed, or embrace change, relishing new growth and development.